STEWART-FORD NOTES AND QUOTES 1998 Luxembourg Grand Prix - Nurburgring Sunday 27th September: RACE Rubens (Qualified: 12th) drove consistently to finish in 11th place while Jos (Qualified:18th) brought his car home to 13th...
STEWART-FORD NOTES AND QUOTES 1998 Luxembourg Grand Prix - Nurburgring Sunday 27th September: RACE
Rubens (Qualified: 12th) drove consistently to finish in 11th place while Jos (Qualified:18th) brought his car home to 13th position. The forecast for rain was not to be and although the race started under overcast skies it ended in bright sunshine. Both drivers suffered from a lack of grip on what proved to be a slippery track. Rubens went for a one-stop strategy while Jos opted for two.
Paul Stewart, Managing Director:
'It was pleasing to have both cars finish, but disappointing as well that we were unable to make a greater impression in the race. Rubens' one-stop strategy appeared to be the right one, but he wasn't able to make the gains we expected. Last year the car handled pretty well here, but for whatever reason, humidity or maybe track conditions, we were not able to find that same level of performance this time. We will look towards next week's three-day test in Barcelona to find improvements which will enable us to round off the season with a competitive race in Japan.'
Martin Whitaker, Ford European Director of Motorsport:
'The penultimate race of the season saw both Stewart-Ford cars finishing a race for the first time since the French Grand Prix. The whole team will be pleased with the increased reliability shown today during a race in which both engines ran faultlessly. We now look forward to the final race at Suzuka before which the team will be testing at Barcelona and Silverstone with a view to running Series 6 engines in Japan.'
Rubens Barrichello: Car no.18: SF-2/05 Position: 11th
'I was fighting for grip for most of the race which meant that I couldn't improve my position as I would have liked. I was involved in a battle with both Saubers soon after the start but I was forced to run over the kerbs at the chicane to avoid Jean Alesi and Johnny Herbert also took advantage. The car seemed to perform at its best after about 20 laps and just before my first stop it was handling better but the Saubers were out of reach. It wasn't one of my most enjoyable races.'
Jos Verstappen: Car no.19: SF-2/02 Position:13th 'I had a very bad start after a minor clutch problem. Both stops went pretty well but I missed my chance to pass Panis when he got out of the pit lane ahead of me. I had a good duel with Salo from about half-distance. My lap times were quite consistent but I was unable to push much more because I was struggling with understeer. It's nice to get the car home and I felt I drove a solid race.'